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EU may slash bluefin tuna quota in 2011: spokesman

by Staff Writers
Strasbourg (AFP) Oct 20, 2010
The European Commission may substantially slash its fishing quota for bluefin tuna next year to ensure the long-term sustainability of the endangered fish, a spokesman said Wednesday.

The European Union's executive arm is working on proposals for the next meeting of International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) between November 17 and 27 in Paris, spokesman Oliver Drewes told AFP.

The proposals will be based on science, he said.

During a meeting with European parliament lawmakers in Strasbourg, European fisheries commissioner Maria Damanaki said "a substantial reduction" of catches "would be the way to go, to ensure a good possibility of having a viable stock until 2020 and a long-term sustainability of it," the spokesman said.

Environmental group WWF welcomed the commissioner's announcement and urged Brussels to make it a centerpiece of the European's position at the ICCAT meeting.

Scientists believe the size of the stock of bluefin tuna is only one-third of sustainable levels, WWF said.

WWF has called for a quota of less than 6,000 tonnes per year. The total allowable catches for 2010 was 13,500 tonnes.




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Forgotten: Gulf of Mexico fishermen fear the future
Washington (AFP) Oct 18, 2010
Six months after the largest maritime oil spill, Gulf of Mexico fishing communities fear for their very future while critics say response efforts have evaporated faster than the toxic crude. US President Barack Obama called it America's worst ever environmental disaster and promised to keep the boot on BP until it had compensated claimants and cleaned up every last drop of oil. But with ... read more

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